Ever since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, so much has been happening around in the sporting world. Sports authorities have come forward to express their stand on the matter and have also taken some bold steps, like putting a ban on Russian and Belarussian athletes. World Tennis bodies have also reacted the same way.
One of four grand slams, Wimbledon has also decided to put a ban on athletes from these two countries. The organizers have clearly stated that no exemptions like playing under a neutral flag will be entertained. While some have appreciated this bold decision by the sporting body, a few athletes have also expressed their concerns.
World No.1 Tennis player, Novak Djokovic was also not happy when the decision was announced and had also expressed his concerns for such athletes. “Ordinary people always suffer – we’ve had lots of wars in the Balkans. That being said, I cannot support the Wimbledon decision. It’s not the athletes’ fault,” Djokovic has said.
“I will always condemn war, I will never support war being myself a child of war. I know how much emotional trauma it leaves. In Serbia, we all know what happened in 1999. In the Balkans, we have had many wars in recent history. However, I cannot support the decision of Wimbledon, I think it is crazy. When politics interferes with sport, the result is not good,” he added.
Now, Djokovic may protest against the decision by not participating in the tournament when it takes place in the UK this year. Although the Serbian has not given any statement in that regard, his former coach Nikola Pilic has said that Djokovic can boycott Wimbledon.
“Boris Johnson is crazy! Rublev and Medvedev have nothing to do with Putin, they just want to play tennis just like everyone else, players like Djoko can boycott Wimbledon” Pilic said.